Kickstarter has launched a lot of brand new games, both video- and otherwise, but it's also home to plenty of people working on ways to enhance and alter existing games, and those people are the stars of this week's Awesome Stuff.
Bridging The Game Gap: Japanese For Gamers
For certain game genres and amongst large portions of the gaming community, Japan is where it's at. Between JRPGs and visual novels, Japan has been pumping out critically acclaimed and hugely popular games whose titles are often barely even heard in the English speaking world, leaving the avid gamers who know about them to campaign for translations and English releases — or to pirate and turn to the fan translation community. This project offers a new alternative for true fans who want to learn something while they're at it: an extensive free video course in speaking Japanese, aimed at gamers with a focus on the language as it is used in video games.
Swirling Lightshow In The Corner Pocket: OpenPool
At this point, pool is timeless — but that doesn't mean it can't be gussied up with some cool technology. OpenPool is a projection mapping system that uses an Xbox Kinect to project a moving, interactive, responsive image onto a pool table. Not only is it a really impressive visual effect, it opens up all kinds of possibilities for new dynamic twists on the game. The coolest part? It's a DIY kit. Combine their software and ceiling mount with your own Kinect, projector and computer, and build an OpenPool system yourself.
Edward Snowden, Jack Of Spades: WIRETAP Cards
I know, I know — I featured a deck of cards two weeks ago too. I wasn't going to include another, but the WIRETAP deck is far too fitting to ignore. It's a full set of original hand-drawn playing cards with suit pips that look at you. The court cards are modelled after important players from the NSA saga and the broader world of privacy and government spying — including Edward Snowden, Jack of Spades.